Baba Ganoush is the perfect recipe for eggplant. The smoky flavor of the roasted eggplant and the creamy texture make it an amazing dip to serve with pita chips and fresh veggies. It's easy to make with only a handful of simple ingredients.
While many baba ganoush recipes call for using a food processor, this one does not and it's not necessary. You can still get a creamy texture by just using a fork to mix it all up. You'll also notice that the recipe doesn't call for garlic cloves. Garlic can be a bit overwhelming and you really want the smoky taste.
What Is Baba Ganoush?
Baba Ganoush is an appetizer from Lebanon made from roasted eggplant, olive oil, tahini and spices. The traditional way to roast the eggplant is over an open flame. It makes a rich and creamy dip without any dairy. This popular Middle Eastern dip can also be used as a spread.
Baba Ganoush Ingredients
This easy recipe uses only a handful of simple ingredients.
- Olive oil
- Lemon juice - Fresh lemon juice tastes much better but in a pinch you can also use store bought.
- Smoked paprika - Do not use regular paprika. Smoked paprika give it so much flavor!
Making the Baba Ganoush
This is a very easy baba ganoush recipe that doesn't even require a food processor. The first step is to preheat the oven to 450°. Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper.
Cup the medium-sized eggplants in half length-wise. Lightly brush each cut side with extra virgin olive oil and place eggplants cut side down on the prepared pan.
Bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and let sit for a few minutes.
Scoop out the eggplant flesh from the skin with a spoon and place in a mesh strainer over a bowl or measuring cup. Allow the excess liquid to drain for about 5 minutes. Discard the liquid.
Place the drained and cooked eggplant in a medium bowl. Use a fork to break up any stringy pieces.
Add in the remaining ingredients: 2 T. olive oil, sesame tahini, lemon juice, salt and smoked paprika. Stir really well until thoroughly combined.
Allow to cool to room temperature before serving. If desired, drizzle a little extra olive oil on top when you are ready to serve. Some people also like to use fresh parsley as a garnish. I love eating this delicious dip with pita wedges and bell pepper slices.
Store baba ganoush in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Freezing Baba Ganoush
Can you freeze baba ganoush? Yes you can although there might be a slight change in the texture. Follow the steps below for best results:
- Allow the baba ganoush to cool completely.
- To make thawing easier, divide it into smaller portions.
- Store in airtight containers or freezer bags. If you are using freezer bags, make sure you remove as much air as possible from the bags before sealing them.
- Place in the freezer for up to 4-6 months.
- When you are ready to use it, thaw overnight in the fridge. Once completely thawed, gift it a good stir before serving.
Baba Ganoush vs. Hummus
Both baba ganoush and hummus are middle eastern dips so what are the main differences? To start, they have different main ingredients. The main ingredient in baba ganoush is eggplant while it's chickpeas for hummus. But they both also use oil and tahini and often lemon juice.
As for the taste, baba ganoush has an amazing smoky, earthy flavor. Plain hummus has a bit of a nutty taste but also comes in many flavors. (I love roasted red pepper hummus!) Overall, plain hummus has a more mild flavor than baba ganoush.
As for nutrition, they are both relatively low in calories and good sources of fiber. Hummus has more protein because of the chickpeas.
Another difference is the availability. You can find hummus in pretty much any grocery store if you don't feel like making it. On the other hand, baba ganoush is mostly found in restaurants or in your own home if you make it.
Which is better? That depends what you're looking for. As a dip, I prefer baba ganoush. As a sandwich spread, hummus is the perfect addition. But they are both delicious!
Is baba ganoush vegan?
Yes! There's no dairy or other animal products in baba ganoush.
Can baba ganoush be spelled a different way?
Yes, baba ganoush is also known as baba ghanouj and baba ghanoush.
What is tahini?
Tahini is simply ground up sesame seeds into a spreadable paste or liquid.
Is baba ganoush healthy?
This creamy dip is healthy...as long as you don't put a ton of olive oil in it. This recipe calls for only 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
Can I make this salt free?
I wouldn't. For best taste you need to add salt or else is could taste bitter.
This classic baba ganoush recipe makes a very flavorful dip and a perfect appetizer. It's super versatile and can even be used as a sandwich spread. Serve it with fresh veggies and pita wedges at your next party!
Looking for other vegan recipes that are great to bring to a get together? Check out:
Easy Baba Ganoush Without Garlic
- 2 medium eggplants
- 2 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for brushing and serving if desired
- ¼ cup tahini
- 2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- Preheat the oven to 450°. Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper.
- Cup the eggplants in half length-wise. Lightly brush each cut side with olive oil and place cut side down on the prepared pan.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes.
- Remove from the oven. Scoop out the eggplant from the skin and place in a mesh strainer over a bowl or measuring cup. Allow the extra liquid to drain for about 5 minutes. Discard the liquid.
- Place the drained and cooked eggplant in a medium bowl. Use a fork to break up any stringy pieces.
- Add in the 2 T. olive oil, tahini, lemon juice, salt and smoked paprika. Stir really well until well combined.
- Allow to cool to room temperature before serving. If desired, drizzle a little extra olive oil on top when you are ready to serve. Store baba ganoush in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- I love eating baba ganoush with cut up pita bread and red, orange, and yellow bell peppers.